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Re: white wolf

Jerry,

Interesting discussion. I do appreciate your comments about relationships and the choice to remain alone. I for now have committed to remaining alone, I truly think that is what I want at this time in life and what is in my best interests. Your ideas are both reassuring and helpful in suggesting how to think and respond inwardly to those feelings that do come up when living alone in a partner (and sex) oriented world.

It took me 6 months to find the right person but after the end of my marriage I went to a good counselor for awhile. She was Buddhist-oriented. In one session, she gently taught me to view the relationship (and previous one) as a part of my life which had existed at a specific time and under specific circumstances, which I could look at from all different angles, without attachment and judgement as to whether bad or good. I like this especially because this marriage represented to me a time of harmony and healing, of successful struggle through and beyond a number of very difficult situations, and of deep contentment. That made the ending so much more shocking and painful, but the choice to live alone now feels natural and "right." I am a Baha'i and the Baha'i Faith expresses a similar philosophy, I believe, as Buddhism concerning the need for that quality of detachment.

A couple other things concerning the dream and consideration of your interpretation have emerged. Finding this counselor was associated in my mind with a waking event that occurred to me and was strikingly parallel to the appearance of the white wolf in the dream. I had been through a summer of intense crisis with the separation (that had also precipitated a series of really frightening nightmares which initially led me to seek out your site here), and in the late fall had finally figured out and decided to take charge of the situation, with more than a little help from some good friends. One late fall afternoon, just before my first appointment with this counselor, I went hiking up a steep trail near town. The light was already fading as I approached the snowline; I was still in the trees and heard an animal which I assumed was another hiker's dog. But there was no one around. I got a glimpse of a furry white animal, then two mountain goats appeared much to my surprise -- and delight -- in the dusky forest. I did not expect them there at all, below treeline and so close to town, and took the experience as a mysterious but very good sign that gave me strength for the work to be done.

Concerning the recent dream and interpretation, I experienced some feelings of self-doubt and also puzzlement over this lack of resolution that you suggested in your interpretation. I feel pretty good about progress I have made and my current state of emotional health and was not sure what unresolved situations I might be overlooking. Then a during wakeful early-morning hours, a new thought emerged concerning the circumstances of my ex-husband's departure. I now believe there may be a child involved. This would explain many things. It satisfies my training as a scientist, to look for the explanation that best fits most of the data and is the most parsimonious. I may never know, and it's not my place to find out, but the idea does liberate me from persistent feelings of self-doubt, inadequacy, and such that linger with the unanswered question, "why?"

So as always, thank you for your insight and thoughtfulness. Your site and work are such an antidote to our cynical, over-produced, and mass-marketed culture -- someone using their own God-given resources and intelligence, with individuality and spirit, to do good in the world and promote wholeness in themselves and in the world.

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Re: white wolf

Jaime,
I appreciate the thoughtful reply. It is good to know you found a counselor who was able to help you work through your inner conflicts. Her Buddhist orientation undoubtedly provides her with insights that most Western oriented counselors are not privy to. Both Jung and Campbell stressed the importance of knowing Eastern traditions and philosophy. As I have said often Buddhism is not a religion, it is a psychology.

Your experience in the woods. Like you I believe in an objective view of life and dismiss most observations about mysterious events as illusions {UFOs, ghosts, that sort of thing}. But I do believe nature has a way of providing moments of mystical experiences that fit with a person's life. Jung called these occurrences Sychronicities. They have or add meaning to the person's life and come about at a time when they are most needed. Such an experience happened to me, an experience that led me to discover Joseph Campbell and put me on a path that I have followed for the past 19 years. Your experience may have fit with the need to refocus your inner guide, a white wolf being such a symbol for inner strength. Your dream would be a continuation of that inner dialog.

Your speech in your reply makes me believe you are taking a correct path to finding balance and harmony in your life. Being alone does not mean loneliness. It can be difficult at first not to have the 'other' to share life but as I stated in my post there are other things that be substitutes. Campbell's declaration to 'follow your bliss' is often a call to the individual to look to the muses for companionship. We all possess a talent and when that 'art' is discovered and utilized there is meaning in life. Here is the dialog between Campbell and Bill Moyers from The Power of Myth on the meaning of life:

Bill Moyers: I came to understand from reading your books - The Masks of God or The Hero With A Thousand Faces, for example - that what human beings have in common is revealed in myths. Myths are the stories of our search through the ages for truth, for meaning, for significance. We all need to tell our story and to understand our story. We all need to understand death and to cope with death, and we all need help in our passages from birth to life and then to death. We need life to signify, to touch the eternal, to understand the mysterious, to find out who we are.



Joseph Campbell: People say that what we're all seeking is a meaning for life. I think that what we're seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive. That's what it's all finally about, and that's what these clues help us to find within ourselves.



Bill Moyers: Myths are clues?




Joseph Campbell: Myths are clues to the spiritual potentialities of the human life.



Bill Moyers: What we are capable of knowing and experiencing within?



Joseph Campbell: Yes.



Bill Moyers: You changed the definition of a myth from the search for meaning to the experience of meaning.



Joseph Campbell: Experience of life. The mind has to do with meaning. What's the meaning of a flower. There's the Zen story about a sermon of the Buddha in which he simply lifeted a flower. There was only one man who gave him a sign with his eyes that he understood what was said. Now, the Buddha himself is called "the one thus come". There's no meaning. What's the meaning of the universe? What's the meaning of a flea? It's just there. We're so engaged in doing things to achieve purposes of outer value that we forget the inner value, the rapture that is associated with being alive, is what it's all about.



You can see from the above why Campbell is so instrumental in helping so many find the inner path to understanding. Finding your bliss, if you not already done so, may be the next great step in your life. I am of the opinion that many who happen upon my website are led by those natural forces such as Sychronicities. When a person discovers the inner life and begins the rehabilitation from the outer ego self they put themselves on a higher plane of understanding and knowledge. I sense you already have an understanding of the 'clues' in life that help bring about a harmonious existence. Staying the course, discipline, is how we finally discover the bliss we seek in life. I sense you are not far from that achievement.
Jerry

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